Heart rate is slowed in part by acetylcholine-dependent activation of a cardiac potassium (K+) channel, IKACh. Activated muscarinic receptors stimulate IKACh via the G-protein beta gamma-subunits. It has been assumed that the inwardly rectifying K(+)-channel gene, GIRK1, alone encodes IKACh. It is now shown that IKACh is a heteromultimer of two distinct inwardly rectifying K(+)-channel subunits, GIRK1 and a newly cloned member of the family, CIR.
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